lic·​o·​rice | \ ˈli-k(ə-)rish How to pronounce licorice (audio) , -k(ə-)rəs How to pronounce licorice (audio) \

Definition of licorice

1a : the dried root of a European leguminous plant (Glycyrrhiza glabra) with pinnate leaves and spikes of blue flowers also : an extract of this used especially in medicine, liquors, and confectionery
b : a candy flavored with licorice or a substitute (such as anise)
2 : a plant yielding licorice also : a related plant

Examples of licorice in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web This serum goes a step further with white shiitake mushroom and licorice root extract to specifically target stubborn dark spots. Jamie Wilson, Harper's BAZAAR, 30 June 2022 Baked apples attempt to rein in a combination of caramel, roasted jackfruit, and plenty of licorice. Felipe Schrieberg, Forbes, 28 June 2022 The result is a Thai basil sauce that Yuchen describes as savory, aromatic, and licorice-scented. Kate Kassin, Bon Appétit, 10 Feb. 2022 Not super tannic with a nice hint of black licorice, the wine is a little spicy with some sour cherry notes and nice body. Marc Bona, cleveland, 12 Dec. 2021 The distillery also uses orris root, cinnamon, goldenrod, licorice, Persian lime, angelica, coriander, bitter orange peel, and lemon peel in its botanical blend. Maggie Menderski, The Courier-Journal, 19 July 2022 The salad packs the sweetness of pears poached in wine with the licorice profile of fennel and the bite of blue cheese. Krissa Rossbund, Better Homes & Gardens, 18 July 2022 Active ingredients: Rice bran, salicylic acid, white tea, and licorice. Cristina Montemayor, Men's Health, 22 June 2022 The 2008 Anderson Valley might have been bottled just yesterday, its dark fruit edged with typical herbaceousness and pops of oak spice and licorice. Sara L. Schneider, Robb Report, 22 May 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'licorice.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of licorice

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for licorice

Middle English licorice, from Anglo-French licoris, from Late Latin liquiritia, alteration of Latin glycyrrhiza, from Greek glykyrrhiza, from glykys sweet + rhiza root — more at dulcet, root

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Time Traveler for licorice

Time Traveler

The first known use of licorice was in the 13th century

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Dictionary Entries Near licorice



licorice fern

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Statistics for licorice

Last Updated

5 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Licorice.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for licorice


lic·​o·​rice | \ ˈli-kə-rish How to pronounce licorice (audio) , -rəs \

Kids Definition of licorice

1 : the dried root of a European plant or a juice from it used in medicine and in candy
2 : candy flavored with licorice


variants: or chiefly British liquorice \ ˈlik(-​ə)-​rish How to pronounce licorice (audio) , -​rəs How to pronounce licorice (audio) \

Medical Definition of licorice

1 : a European leguminous plant of the genus Glycyrrhiza (G. glabra) with pinnate leaves and spikes of blue flowers
b : an extract of glycyrrhiza commonly prepared in the form of a gummy or rubbery paste

More from Merriam-Webster on licorice

Nglish: Translation of licorice for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of licorice for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about licorice


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